From the San Diego Zoo, a zoo worker cares for two bonobos.
Wild populations are extremely endangered. They are being decimated at alarming rates in Democratic Republic of Congo.
The recent birth of a male infant named Tutapenda, left, on Oct. 29 is a significant milestone for conservation efforts. He joins his two-month-old half-sister Mali who is also being hand-raised due to medical complications at birth.
Bonobo apes, or Pygmy Apes (Pan paniscus), are our closest living relatives. They have 98% of the same genetic DNA as humans. Chimps are shown to be more closely related to humans than to other gorillas. Morris Goodman of Wayne State University in Detroit argues that the Bonobo and Common Chimpanzee are so closely related to humans, their genus name should also be classified with the Human genus Homo: Homo paniscus, Homo sylvestris, or Homo arboreus.
"They giggle when you tickle them in the right spot, it doesn't sound like a baby's giggle, it's more of a breathy chortle, but they stick their tongue out and close their eyes, almost as if they're asking for it."
Check out this blog from a woman who spent time studying these beautiful animals.